Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Build 'Em Up -- Bringing Faith To Life

I'm linking up with some truly awe-inspiring bloggers today on their series "Build 'Em Up." The first topic is "Bringing Faith To Life" -- ironically something I have a very hard time doing. So why do I think I can write about something that I admittedly frequently fail? Well, in the words of Jennifer, Kelly, Erin, and Courtney, this series is about "[dropping] the judgment and [building] each other up...To break the misconception that good equals perfect, and to seek out the meaningful even in the midst of the mundane."

Every Wednesday night for the past 7 weeks and even before then intermittently, my family and I have gone to church to eat supper with many parish members.  After supper the kids are shipped off to their age-appropriate nurseries while Bobby and I (sometimes me alone) take a class with our parish's Young Families group.  Last Wednesday night -- as is the case most nights -- our priest was walking around greeting and mingling.  I drug Rob by his earlobe strongly suggested that Rob, age 6, go speak to Father and ask him for his prayers.  You see, this was 2 nights before Rob was to have surgery to place his third set of ear tubes and remove his adenoids.  Rob told me he would be so embarrassed.  He didn't want the attention.  He didn't want Father to single him out.  But after quietly being prayed over and given a quick pat on the shoulder, Rob realized and mentioned "that wasn't so bad."  Fast forward to the morning of the surgery.  An extremely groggy Rob was waking up and looking around the room.  I was loving on him and telling him how well he had done.  He looked at me with all honesty and said, "those prayers must have helped." 

You see, I believe that anyone can pray in his or her heart.  Even the most remote love of Christ is reciprocated.  But I also believe that Christ built his church for us to have a home.  In a world so full of hate and evil sometimes God's love gets pushed to the background of our lives.  Therefore, finding a church that welcomes you, and then becoming an active member of that church brings your relationship with God into a more tangible experience. 

My kids have memorized the blessing we say over our meals.  So perfectly have they memorized this blessing that they often rush through the words and rush to take in their food.  Every once in a while I make them stop and say it very slowly.  I will over enunciate some of the words to force them to remember we are actually saying a very formal "thanks" to God for providing us with nourishment.  It is too easy to rush through all communication with God, especially prayer.  Sometimes we need to slow down and make sure our message is genuine. 

Easter is coming up.  I love Easter.  I love all the pastel colors, the new pretty clothes for the kids.  The fun backdrops for the portraits.  Hmm...what haven't I mentioned?  Oh yes, the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus...the reason for Easter.   Now this is a hard one for me.  It's easy to teach the kids that Santa is named for Saint Nicholas and he wishes to remind us with presents that we are celebrating a birthday.  But how to you teach that a bunny is to remind us Jesus was wrongly convicted and severely executed so that we may have eternal life?  I'm seriously asking here, because I really struggle with this.  However, this Easter, I plan to try to incorporate as many Christian traditions as I can muster up, thanks in part to a little old site called Pinterest.  I found and repinned this gem full of ideas:

I am a very faithful person at heart. I love the Lord and I believe He loves me. Now, do I live that faith everyday? Not exactly...but again, I am not here to confess my failures. I am here to remind myself that what I do right still matters and still impacts my children.  So I look forward to reading other entries in this series and gain some perspective.  I also will accept all of your prayers that I may raise my children to know God and hopefully continue to choose to have a great relationship with Him.


  1. Hey Emily! I'm so glad you've joined the link up. I have struggled with the same thing. Easter might be the most important thing and how to teach our little ones - when all they know are the eggs and bunnies and cute dresses. I wrote something last year that might help but I am certainly still figuring it out. So glad to "meet you" through this. Take care, Courtney

  2. Hi :) I love that link you shared, right now Braylen is young, but she understands a lot more than I give her credit for. I love the quote "Sometimes we need to slow down and make sure our message is genuine." Wow! So true. At times I rely on saying the same things and doing the same things over and over because they are familiar. But, I need to slow down more, thanks for the reminder!